7/28/08

Spotted today

at the San Francisco Botanical Garden:

Naked ladies!

Amaryllis belladonna

lots of them.

Amaryllis belladonna

Amaryllis belladonna. You know what that means. The end of summer approacheth.

This time of year fills me with ambivalence. Late summer has unique qualities that I enjoy, yet I feel the creeping dread of winter.

Winter is the rainy season in coastal California. In the California garden, winter rains are a distant memory. This time of year golds and grays and pale greens prevail. I think it's sublimely beautiful, but some people just see a fire hazard. Or, maybe worse, they see dead things.

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People who know perfectly well that plants in winter dormancy are not dead fail to understand the same phenomenon when it occurs during the summer. The mind is stuck.

The late-blooming spring annual Clarkia is still in flower.

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The milkweed Asclepias speciosa won't even come up until the ground has been dry for a month.

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And what could be lovelier?

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5 comments:

Pam/Digging said...

Your understanding of and appreciation for the seasonal changes of your region---opposite what we normally see featured in gardening magazines (but not far different from Austin's climate)---is beautifully expressed in this post. Though it's dry, is it cool, I'm wondering? What are your average highs at this time of year?

chuck b. said...

That's a good question. Average temperature is slippery concept where I am.

Some days of sunny and warm (say, mid-80s) are followed by some days of cold and foggy (mid-50s).

Sometimes those periods last for weeks instead of days. Sometimes just hours.

cindee said...

I would take the fog to the smoke any day(-: And I could grow fuchsias too!!!!! The dry time in CA is dangerous thats for sure. I hope CA doesn't burn completely up this summer.)-: Thanks for sharing your pictures. I enjoyed seeing them.

Bruce in Glen Park said...

NAKED LADIES>.....lol.

That was a childhood thing that we all laughed at. I was not really sure anyone else used the term...but now I guess I just found out.

Bruce in Glen Park.

lisa said...

LOVE those naked ladies!! Funny how my mom always called them that, but I just took it as matter-of-fact and not really funny. Of course, I was the girl whose elementary school was named Boner Elementary, and I didn't get that joke until I was 16. Seriously.